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Old 05-20-2013, 11:34 PM   #1
flipture
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Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 20
Default Charger stops charging after around 30 minutes

(I've seen the other threads similar to this one but I was unable to find a resolution from it)

So I'm pretty new to carts but have been reading for two days and have already done quite a bit to troubleshoot and fix this issue before posting... I got this cart off of a trade. The cart was said to be in good working condition with 2 year old batteries. When the cart was dropped off, it would barely make it up my hill during the test drive and the previous owner said that it just needed a charge... Not sure if I should have believed this or not.

I put it on the charger, came back later and the charger was not charging any longer. The cart would still barely make it up the hill and very quickly (within a minute) would barely make it back up my driveway.

This brought me to find that the charger wasn't staying on for more than about 30 minutes or so. After letting it sit for a while after that I tested the pack and saw just under 36v. Long story short, I found a bunch of crappy corroded wires and replaced all of the bad ones. I cleaned contacts and also tested each batteries individually. Here are the results...

6.35
6.34
6.20
6.25
6.27
6.28

This seemed good from what I've heard but I'm still not convinced that they're OK under load.

I have a powerwise charger like most others. The cart is a 2005... I've been pulling the charger cord and putting it back and it will charge for another 30 or so minutes. After 4 or 5 of these cycles, and waiting 9 or so hours, the pack ready 36V or 37V. I've done this a few more times but haven't taken it back out for a test drive yet to see if it feels any better...

I've cleaned the contacts on the receptacle a bit and looked inside its box on the cart and it looks ok to me...

So my questions...

1) Any thoughts on what this might be? or what I can check to drill down to the problem? I wish i had another charger to test but I don't.

2) After a charge I can hear the batteries bubbling or whatever and they leak a little bit of water onto the top. Does this mean they are overfilled? The previous owner said that he topped off the batteries to just above the plates (wondering if he let the level drop much below the plates which worries me)

3) The only reason I made the trade was so I could turn around and sell this easier than the motor that I was selling. If the batteries are bad, should I insist he take the cart and simply pay me the $2k for my motor? Or would I still be able to turn a profit buying new batteries and selling the cart?

Any help would be appreciated and please let me know if I've left off any important information. Thanks in advance!
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Old 05-20-2013, 11:36 PM   #2
flipture
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Default Re: Charger stops charging after around 30 minutes

Also could a mod or admin please change my username to flipture? Not sure how my email address got assigned as my username, or how vbulletin allowed that to happen lol.
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Old 05-21-2013, 12:01 AM   #3
crash test dummy
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Default Re: Charger stops charging after around 30 minutes

Quote:
Originally Posted by flipture@comcast.net View Post
. Here are the results...

6.35
6.34
6.20
6.25
2.27
6.28
that's a dead battery !!!!
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Old 05-21-2013, 12:28 AM   #4
flipture
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Default Re: Charger stops charging after around 30 minutes

Quote:
Originally Posted by crash test dummy View Post
that's a dead battery !!!!
Typo! its 6. :)
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Old 05-21-2013, 06:18 AM   #5
JohnnieB
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Default Re: Charger stops charging after around 30 minutes

Batteries 3 thru 6 are not anywhere near charged and the battery pack is imbalanced.
If you can lay your hands on 6V charger, give the batteries some individual charging to better balance the pack and then use the 36V charger to charge the pack to its max capacity.

1. 6.35 = 98% = -5AH
2. 6.34 = 96% = -9AH
3. 6.20 = 73% = -61AH
4. 6.25 = 80% = -45AH
5. 6.27 = 84% = -36AH
6. 6.28 = 85% = -34AH

To estimate how long to charge each battery with the 6V charger, divide the AH in the last column by the 6V charger's output amps and double it.

For example: If the 6V charger put out 10A, B1 needs about an hour and B3 needs a bit over 12 hours.
Total time needed for all six batteries is about 38 Hours.

------------
Powerwise makes a lot of different charger models, which charger do you have?
If it weighs about 25 pounds and has an ammeter, it is on of the older (and better) ones.
When it first comes on, the ammeter should climb into the 15A-20A range, stay there for a few minutes and then start tapering off.
The 36V battery pack's On-Charge voltage should climb into the 44V to 46V range before charger shuts off.

----------
The gassing (bubbling) is normal and electrolyte bubbling out through the vented caps typically indicates the cells were overfilled.

----------
Poor performance may be due to weak batteries or it may be due to high resistance in the high current drive circuit.

If you had some that were bad, they probably all need to be replaced. A PDS cart has 10 high current cables and a series cart has 12.
Replacement cables should be 4Ga or heavier.
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Old 05-21-2013, 08:42 AM   #6
scottyb
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Default Re: Charger stops charging after around 30 minutes

Can you try this charger on another cart to see if it stays on for normal 5-8 hour charge? If yes, then the problem may be worn contacts in the cart charger receptacle.
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Old 05-21-2013, 11:16 AM   #7
flipture
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Posts: 20
Default Re: Charger stops charging after around 30 minutes

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnnieB View Post
Batteries 3 thru 6 are not anywhere near charged and the battery pack is imbalanced.
If you can lay your hands on 6V charger, give the batteries some individual charging to better balance the pack and then use the 36V charger to charge the pack to its max capacity.

1. 6.35 = 98% = -5AH
2. 6.34 = 96% = -9AH
3. 6.20 = 73% = -61AH
4. 6.25 = 80% = -45AH
5. 6.27 = 84% = -36AH
6. 6.28 = 85% = -34AH

To estimate how long to charge each battery with the 6V charger, divide the AH in the last column by the 6V charger's output amps and double it.

For example: If the 6V charger put out 10A, B1 needs about an hour and B3 needs a bit over 12 hours.
Total time needed for all six batteries is about 38 Hours.

------------
Powerwise makes a lot of different charger models, which charger do you have?
If it weighs about 25 pounds and has an ammeter, it is on of the older (and better) ones.
When it first comes on, the ammeter should climb into the 15A-20A range, stay there for a few minutes and then start tapering off.
The 36V battery pack's On-Charge voltage should climb into the 44V to 46V range before charger shuts off.

----------
The gassing (bubbling) is normal and electrolyte bubbling out through the vented caps typically indicates the cells were overfilled.

----------
Poor performance may be due to weak batteries or it may be due to high resistance in the high current drive circuit.

If you had some that were bad, they probably all need to be replaced. A PDS cart has 10 high current cables and a series cart has 12.
Replacement cables should be 4Ga or heavier.
Awesome info! I'm seeing if I can get my hands on a 6V charger. That leaves me with a few more questions tho...

1) Would you expect batteries with these voltages to be able to power a cart enough to get it up a hill and drive around normally? I'm wondering if the poor performance is actually from the batteries or the drive circuit. Should I test voltage while under load to pinpoint the problem? I've cleaned some of the contacts on the drive circuit that were nasty. When I first got the cart I could smell a burning smell after a short drive coming from (i believe) the drive circuit. I could feel heat coming from the wires which I know is caused by resistance. This is why I looked closer, found the bad wires and replaced any that I didn't feel were in good condition. I did use 4G wires and soldered the ends on... Now there is no burning smell and the wires and drive circuit does not seem to be getting hot which is a good improvement. If not the battery voltage test under load, then maybe test resistance between points on the drive circuit?

2) Can you give me any details on what requirements I would need in a 6V charger? It might be nice to get one that does 12v and 6v so I can use it in the future on my cars...

3) The charger is one of the old ones I believe. The model number is "28115 G01". Its heavy as crap :).

Would something like this be sufficent?
NOCO Genius G3500 6V/12V 3.5 Amp Smart Battery Charger and Maintainer : Amazon.com : Automotive NOCO Genius G3500 6V/12V 3.5 Amp Smart Battery Charger and Maintainer : Amazon.com : Automotive

4) Awesome, good to know about the gassing. I did read that it was normal but wanted to make sure as the little bits of water leaking out worried me... Seems its been regular for this cart as the battery tray metal is extremely corroded and eaten away. I'm tempted to weld up a new one before I sell it... I would hate to sell it in that condition.

Think anyone would be interested in picking up a new tray if I welded up a couple of extras while I was at it? I could do aluminum or steel...

Quote:
Originally Posted by scottyb View Post
Can you try this charger on another cart to see if it stays on for normal 5-8 hour charge? If yes, then the problem may be worn contacts in the cart charger receptacle.
I don't know of any other carts I could try it on unfortunately... Have you seen bad receptacle contacts cause chargers to stop charging early? All of the cases that I've read with bad receptacle's either wouldn't charge, or clicked on and off quickly.
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Old 05-21-2013, 11:30 AM   #8
crash test dummy
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Default Re: Charger stops charging after around 30 minutes

imho that's not the charger you want .. will charge but very slowly
something like this with adjustable amps and volts
Battery Charger and Engine Starter, 10/2/55 Amp, 6/12 Volt $49.99 harbor freight

http://www.harborfreight.com/10-2-55...ter-66783.html

also you can charge 2 6v batteries together as a 12v
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Old 05-21-2013, 12:10 PM   #9
TxPowderCoater
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Posts: 137
Default Re: Charger stops charging after around 30 minutes

Dang, I think you should have researched before making the deal, not after and then decide it wasnt a good deal. thats what your supposed to do before you trade me thinks.

that being said, go get some continetals and then sell it, they will set you back 650 and the cart will sell quick and for more money when it runs good of course and if you look on your local craigslist, you will see what the current local pricing on carts is.



Quote:
Originally Posted by flipture View Post
(I've seen the other threads similar to this one but I was unable to find a resolution from it)

So I'm pretty new to carts but have been reading for two days and have already done quite a bit to troubleshoot and fix this issue before posting... I got this cart off of a trade. The cart was said to be in good working condition with 2 year old batteries. When the cart was dropped off, it would barely make it up my hill during the test drive and the previous owner said that it just needed a charge... Not sure if I should have believed this or not.

I put it on the charger, came back later and the charger was not charging any longer. The cart would still barely make it up the hill and very quickly (within a minute) would barely make it back up my driveway.

This brought me to find that the charger wasn't staying on for more than about 30 minutes or so. After letting it sit for a while after that I tested the pack and saw just under 36v. Long story short, I found a bunch of crappy corroded wires and replaced all of the bad ones. I cleaned contacts and also tested each batteries individually. Here are the results...

6.35
6.34
6.20
6.25
6.27
6.28

This seemed good from what I've heard but I'm still not convinced that they're OK under load.

I have a powerwise charger like most others. The cart is a 2005... I've been pulling the charger cord and putting it back and it will charge for another 30 or so minutes. After 4 or 5 of these cycles, and waiting 9 or so hours, the pack ready 36V or 37V. I've done this a few more times but haven't taken it back out for a test drive yet to see if it feels any better...

I've cleaned the contacts on the receptacle a bit and looked inside its box on the cart and it looks ok to me...

So my questions...

1) Any thoughts on what this might be? or what I can check to drill down to the problem? I wish i had another charger to test but I don't.

2) After a charge I can hear the batteries bubbling or whatever and they leak a little bit of water onto the top. Does this mean they are overfilled? The previous owner said that he topped off the batteries to just above the plates (wondering if he let the level drop much below the plates which worries me)

3) The only reason I made the trade was so I could turn around and sell this easier than the motor that I was selling. If the batteries are bad, should I insist he take the cart and simply pay me the $2k for my motor? Or would I still be able to turn a profit buying new batteries and selling the cart?

Any help would be appreciated and please let me know if I've left off any important information. Thanks in advance!
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Old 05-21-2013, 12:37 PM   #10
JohnnieB
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Location: West Virginia
Posts: 19,421
Default Re: Charger stops charging after around 30 minutes

Quote:
Originally Posted by flipture View Post
1) Would you expect batteries with these voltages to be able to power a cart enough to get it up a hill and drive around normally? I'm wondering if the poor performance is actually from the batteries or the drive circuit. Should I test voltage while under load to pinpoint the problem? I've cleaned some of the contacts on the drive circuit that were nasty. When I first got the cart I could smell a burning smell after a short drive coming from (i believe) the drive circuit. I could feel heat coming from the wires which I know is caused by resistance. This is why I looked closer, found the bad wires and replaced any that I didn't feel were in good condition. I did use 4G wires and soldered the ends on... Now there is no burning smell and the wires and drive circuit does not seem to be getting hot which is a good improvement. If not the battery voltage test under load, then maybe test resistance between points on the drive circuit?

2) Can you give me any details on what requirements I would need in a 6V charger? It might be nice to get one that does 12v and 6v so I can use it in the future on my cars...

3) The charger is one of the old ones I believe. The model number is "28115 G01". Its heavy as crap :).

Would something like this be sufficent?
NOCO Genius G3500 6V/12V 3.5 Amp Smart Battery Charger and Maintainer : Amazon.com : Automotive

4) Awesome, good to know about the gassing. I did read that it was normal but wanted to make sure as the little bits of water leaking out worried me... Seems its been regular for this cart as the battery tray metal is extremely corroded and eaten away. I'm tempted to weld up a new one before I sell it... I would hate to sell it in that condition.


5) I don't know of any other carts I could try it on unfortunately... Have you seen bad receptacle contacts cause chargers to stop charging early? All of the cases that I've read with bad receptacle's either wouldn't charge, or clicked on and off quickly.
1. Poor performance and short run-times are usually caused by batteries failing under load or by excessive resistance in high current cables and contacts.

A quick and dirty load test is to measure the pack voltage (Main Negative and Main Positive posts) while driving (WOT) up a small incline (or level ground if cart won't do slight hills). The measure the voltage between the M- (A1 on PDS controllers)and B+ terminals on the controller driving over same stretch of ground WOT.

The voltage should be the same, or very close to it.
If it isn't the same, there is excessive resistance in the high current loop, or a controller issue.

2. The one Crash suggested will do the job. Anything that puts out about 5A up to about 25A with a 6V battery setting. It just takes longer with the low amp ones.

3. The Powerwise 28115 is a good charger. Unlike some of the later Powerwise offering, it is 100% repairable.

The NOCO linked to would probably work, but it would take a while. Something like a day and a half for the weakest battery alone.

4. Batteries gas when they are charged and it is pretty easy to overfill them.

5. Excessive resistance in the cart's charge loop will also cause the charger to shut off sooner.

The charger you have cuts off when the sensed voltage reaches about 45V.
That is the on-charge voltage of the six batteries, plus any voltage developed across the radsoks (terminals) in the receptacle, whate and black wires from reciptacle to main +&- battery pack terminal, the 50A or 60A fuse (if it exists) and the five interconnecting high current cables.
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